NOT LETTING AGE DEFINE MY LIFE OR STYLE

We've Had A Blog Make-over | Future Plans for the Blog

Welcome to my new blog design!


Spring is decidedly here now.  It officially started last Monday and I, for one, am cock-a-hoop about it.

Why?

Because Spring is my favourite season.

It heralds new beginnings, awakenings, the rebirth of nature; so much promise on the horizon and the glorious prospect of longer days and warmer weather ahead of us.  We're all shaking off the sloth of Winter and for me, on a personal level, as some of you may know, I'm wanting to slowly emerge from the dark time of losing my Mum at the end of October, last year.  This Winter gone was certainly bleaker than any that had been before.  Of course, I'm still grieving and will be for some time.  Grief doesn't suddenly vanish with the appearance of the daffodils, however cheering their bright yellow blooms may be.  I miss Mum terribly, especially as yesterday was Mother's Day in the UK.

This Season more than the other three I feel, gives us a chance to reassess, reorganise and hopefully look forward with renewed energy.

If you've been a visitor here before, you may notice we look a little different!  We've done a Spring clean at Petite Silver Vixen.

We've a brand spanking new website design!

It's something I've wanted to do for a good few months now; since last Autumn in fact.  But with everything going on with my Dad's cancer diagnosis and then losing Mum, anything blog related was the last thing on my mind.

However, Spring seemed the perfect time for a blog make-over.  There are still a few tweaks to iron out here and there with the design, but in the main, I'm absolutely chuffed to bits with it.

How did I choose it?

Choosing a new design can be a daunting process.  I had to get it right first time because you don't really want to be chopping and changing your design.  I did quite abit a research before settling on a design from Pipdig.  I know of several bloggers who've used their designs and they have always given them the thumbs up.  My blogging pal Laurie, from Vanity and Me Style, has her template from them and said how helpful they'd been with her design.  Laurie, by her own admission is not the most tech savvy of people and I would say that I'm only slightly further up the tech ladder than her.  If Laurie was happy with them, then that was an excellent recommendation in my eyes.

They have a very varied selection of templates for both blogger and wordpress but the one design I kept coming back to was Equinox.  It's one of their most expensive templates but even at £49.00 it doesn't break the bank.  It comes with lots of features, more than some of the other designs they offer and I liked the cleanness of the design, both the screen version and the mobile version.


Thank you that man!

I can't extol the virtues of the design without also extolling the virtues of the service from Pipdig. Phil was extremely helpful and, more importantly very patient.  It can't be easy dealing with a self confessed techno-idiot and partial techno-phobe like myself but he answered every query in ways that the layman could understand.

A hearty round of applause to Phil.

Defining my Blog Personality

Along with the new template, it was also pertinent to update my colours and tag line.  Even with only 18 months of blogging under my belt, my blogging personality has evolved and sharpened just as my wardrobe has.  They needed to be brought more into sync with each other.

The header on my old design was in my favourite colour - blue.  Given half the chance, everything in my life would be blue.  But how boring would that be, living just in a world of blue!

Time for a change.  But what colour?

It was so obvious what it should be.  I mean it had been staring me in the face for quite a while, that it was about to slap me round the face with a wet fish!  In my avatar and profile photo, I'm wearing one of my favourite coloured berets; a gorgeously rich raspberry, burgundy one.  As my berets are something of a signature for me, when I looked at the photo again, it wasn't just like a light bulb going off but a ruddy great big EXPLOSION!

That's it!  There!  That's the colour!  BINGO!

In order to get the right colour - or certainly near enough to the beret in the photo - I used imagecolorpicker.com.  It's so ridiculously easy to use, even I, the techno-idiot that I am, didn't need to ask Tall Brown Fox for any help!

'And that's saying something.' says small voice of reason, taking a sly swig of vodka in the corner.

You upload the image, hover the cursor over the area you want to get your colour match and you get the HTML colour code for that pixel!

My font colours match my beret.  How brilliant is that?


Next up; my tagline

My old one was,

'Rediscovering the 80% of my wardrobe, I wore less than 20% of the time, pre blog.'

Somewhat wordy but certainly very true at the time I started blogging.  Since turning 50 last June, I had wanted a punchier tagline.  One that was short and sweet and in a sentence defined my long held attitude to life and style.  After much brain storming and running ideas past Tall Brown Fox for his opinion I chose,
'Not letting age define my life or style'

because it doesn't and it won't!

I now feel my blog is truly reflective of not just my style but my personality.

Future Blog Plans

With my new design in place, I can stride confidently forward with blog plans that have been brewing in my blog cauldron for quite a while, minus eye of newt and toe of frog!

- I'll be resuming The Seasonal Skinny Style Challenge.  I have unfinished business with this as it unfortunately got abandoned half way through the Spring Season last year.  I dislike loose threads so come April, I'll be taking up my weekly styling again to get to the finish line at the end of August.

- From April, I'll be hosting a monthly style link-up.  But it will be a link-up with a twist!  In the next week or so, I'll be announcing details of what it will be.  As a hint, there'll be a chance to participate in the link-up way beyond just linking various outfits from the previous month.

- I've a 5 part blog series planned on the Menopause.  I'm right in the throes of this currently and it's been a turbulent time to say the least.  In a series of posts, I'll explain how I'm approaching and dealing with this life-changing experience.  Sharing tips that hopefully other menopausal women will be able to use.

- New categories will be added.  In particular, look out for them under Style Ideas and Categories.  All designed to make it easier to find previous posts on specific style features or lifestyle topics.

Make-over Footnote

The whole blog make-over has been a far less stressful process than I imagined and absolutely worth every second I've spent on planning it.  And thank you for your patience as I ease myself back into the land of blogging after what has been rather a traumatic previous 5 months.

I hope you like the new layout and design.  Let me know your thoughts and comments below.

Linking with:

30 comments

  1. How exciting---it must be the time to do this, because we just redesigned my blog too!! There's always something to update, right? Well, yours certainly looks fabulous---very clean!!
    I can't wait to find out about the new link up!! You will remind us, right?
    jodie
    www.jtouchofstyle.com

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    1. Great minds think alike. Or is it because Spring is in the air? Thanks for the thumbs up!
      Oh yes, don't worry, I'll remind you. It will be lovely to have you link when it's launched.

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  2. Jacqueline, Happy Spring!

    Your new blog design is smashing. It has a crisp, tailored feel without being buttoned-up or stuffy. (I can't imagine you ever designing anything buttoned-up and stuffy.) I'm looking forward to your upcoming posts, especially the Menopause series as I am currently just on the cusp of it myself and I'm curious about what's ahead.

    Wishing you loads of springtime energy and sending you cyber-hugs from a continent and an ocean away. (I think cyber-hugs can travel that far, right?)

    - Sherry
    www.petiteover40.com

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    1. Thank you Sherry. Ha, ha, I could never be buttoned-up and stuffy. I'd end up giggling too much for that!
      Yes, the ole menopause - all will be revealed and the main thing is that it doesn't have to be dreaded.
      You are absolutely right - cyber hugs are uber far reaching and I feel the boost of the springtime energy already!

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  3. Nice new design! I share your love of Spring. It generates enthusiasm in our minds to make positive improvements in every area. You're starting well. :-)

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    1. Thanks Ally. It certainly enthuses me. Just the return of colour alone makes me smile.

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  4. Loving the new blog design! Looks so clean and fresh. I am excited for the plans you have too.

    Amy Ann
    Straight A Style

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    1. Thanks Amy. Glad you like it. It certainly does feel clean and fresh.

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  5. Oh Jacqui it's so good to have you back in blogland! I love what you have chosen and I'm so pleased that you got the help from Phil (told you he was good!) Pipdigs support is amazing and so helpful. Thank you so much for for the mention and for linking up to celebrating style. I'm very behind myself at the moment due to both my in laws being in hospital. xx
    www.vanityandmestyle.com

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    1. It's good to be back, Laurie. It's always good to have a recommendation and yours worked a treat.
      Hope the in-laws are getting better.

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  6. love love love your new blog design! super cute!


    kelseybang.com

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  7. Congretulations on your new ,,image,,! I also used Pipdig because Laurie said they were good! I am looking forward all the new things on your blog!

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    1. Yay another Pipdig user. We are taking over the world!

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  8. woww, lovely new design, neat and beautiful, and so cool that you matched your heading with your favorite beret color!, brilliant!
    I'm also interested in revamp my blog, as it looks a Little bit dated and frumpy, so your experience encourages me!
    And so damn cool that you're going to tell us about Menopause, that's great!!
    besos

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    1. Do it Monica, you won't regret it! It's so simple and they offer a free installation service so they do all the heavy work!
      Glad you like the design.
      Yes, I'm furiously writing them at the moment so hopefully you'll find them useful.

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  9. Pipdig are amazing! I actually use equinox haha but have customised it a little to change minor details.

    Good luck with the design process

    Adrianna xx
    http://mimamochi.com/

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    1. Equinox seems to be popular then! Thanks, I'm looking forward to putting my own stamp on it.

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  10. I love your fab new blog layout, hooray for Pipdig! I got my template from them too. Looking forward to your new link up :-)

    Emma xxx
    www.style-splash.com

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    1. We're in the pipdig club. Glad you like the design.
      Yes, stay tuned as it will be rather an unusual link up!

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  11. So happy to see you back feeling refreshed with a new blog design!

    bisous
    Suzanne

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    1. Thank you Suzanne. It's good to be back. I've missed everyone.

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  12. And I am in the Pipdig club too: theme Aruba Nights. Why did I choose that one? No idea. I must have had a tip from another blogger too, oh I know: Susan from Une femme d'un certain âge. She advised me. As I am a lazy bastard, I employ a sweet young guy to do all my work. And he didn't need Phil haha. I would have. My guy also installed a new email subscription service for me (Mailchimp) and transferred (very important), the subscribers from feedburner (I think it was called) to Mailchimp.
    I have to say, I kept my design much like the old one as I want it to be simple. Well, that is my excuse.. you can also call it unimaginative. And probably be right 😎. Your design is really neat.
    I laughed when I read : 'And that's saying something.' says small voice of reason, taking a sly swig of vodka in the corner' hahaha. I like such funny sidelines.
    Oh before I forget, I noticed that when you link to a previous post it doesn't open in a new window. Is that deliberately?
    Greetje
    PS I am very curious to see whether you have installed a plug-in which sends your reply to my. comment (I hope you reply) to my email address.

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    1. And so the Pipdig club grows! Even Jill from Grown Up Glamour is in the club I found out today! I shall have to look into an email subscription service.
      Um... maybe I need to find myself a sweet young guy too, to join my merry band of technical men of Phil and Tall Brown Fox!
      I'm glad someone likes my humour! That small voice of reason doesn't half chip in sometimes.
      Er, linked posts should open in another window. It does my end. Maybe it's your browser?
      Not sure about the plug-in. I'll need to consult one of the army of men I employ for the technical stuff!

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  13. It looks lovely! I am so sorry about your loss- it still makes me so sad for you as for anyone who has lost a parent.
    Your new link ups and template look so lovely, I look forward to seeing you back again. I've not changed template for a long time. Too scared to screw it up. After all it's my 12th blogiversary in 4 days so I couldn't bear the thought that my work of a third of my life disappeared if I tampered with anything!!x

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    1. Thank you Kezzie for your kind words. It's good to be back.
      Wow, I can't believe it's 12 years! As long as you have everything backed up you'd be find and Phil at Pipdig was so helpful.

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  14. Glad to see you back and even more stylish than ever Jacqueline. The new format it lovely and it's great to have all of your changes explained too.

    The sadness in your heart won't ease for a long time, if ever, but I'm sure that your mother would be happy that you're forging on with life and picking things up again. Your absence in the blogsphere was noticed and I'm delighted that you feel ready to take part again. Welcome back x

    Anna
    www.annasislandstyle.com

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    1. What thoughtful and touching words Anna, thank you so much.
      You are absolutely right, she would want me to be forging ahead and celebrating life and so I channel her energy and memory.

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  15. I was wondering what you were up to, and if you were back blogging yet! Nice to see you again and loving the blog template. I've used pipdig - amazing aren't they? Nice to have you back blogging and I hope the past few months haven't been to difficult for you. x Jacqui
    www.mummabstylish.com

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    1. Thank you Jacqui. Yes, I'm easing my way back in. It's been hard and will be for a while but it's baby steps back to the blogsphere.
      Glad to hear you're in the pipdig club too!

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